(Saturday) Healing the Wounds of Turtle Island

Like extreme inequality, we live in an era of extreme violence. Indeed, it is has been present in every generation since the founding of this nation. Violence acts on multiple levels and is not limited to the giver and receiver, but rather, is passed down from generation to generation, over many years of transgenerational trauma. Chronic depression, anxiety, and rampant addiction - these are just some of the ways in which generational trauma reappears in our culture, over and over. How do we examine the deep generational wounds we all carry? How do we confront the traumatic events or patterns of violence within our lives? Come engage with 3 wise leaders in the field of healing the wounds of our world.


Sherri Mitchell is a Penobscot Nation leader whose wisdom and vision guide her every step and help to inspire all of those who meet and work with her. Born and raised on the Penobscot Indian Reservation, Sherri received her J.D. and a certificate in Indigenous Peoples Law and Policy and has practiced law in a public and civil capacity for many years. She is the founder and director of the Land Peace Foundation, providing low cost legal assistance, alternative dispute resolution and training programs to Indigenous populations, groups, and organizations, in order to protect their human rights, homelands, sacred sites, resources and cultural way of life. Sherri believes in the importance of love in revolution, and the need to heal the wounds, from which we are all born, as habitants of Turtle Island - the indigenous name for the "north american continent" - where bloody land grabs and genocide mar the cultural history of the place.

Tracy Penfield is the founder and director of SafeArt and Altus Healing Arts Center in Chelsea VT. With over 35 years experience as an artist and educator in Fiber Arts and Dance, Tracy was led to begin a SafeArt: an non profit organization engaging the transformative power of the arts to prevent and heal abuse and other traumas; SafeArt works to educate, inspire and heal people and their communities, across the spectrum of prevention and recovery. In 2016, Tracy published A Curriculum of Courage: Making SafeArt, a comprehensive text recording the curriculum Tracy has created over a lifetime. Tracy offers individual therapeutic sessions that combine energy healing, movement and voice in a process she developed, called Tracing. Tracy also teaches yoga, dance, weaving and mindfulness. Tracy has an interest in equine therapy, through which abused and neglected horses and people can learn from and be healed by each other in profound ways. Tracy believes in the power of the arts to create personal and social change. 

Rev. Dr. Gregory Wilson is a Fellow with the American Association of Pastoral Counselors, has had a counseling practice for 25 years, and has been minister for the past 10 years at the Unitarian Universalist Church of Brevard in Melbourne, Florida. Based in East Thetford VT, Gregory offers affordable counseling for individuals, families, couples, and children. In recent years Dr. Wilson’s attention has moved from the therapy office to focusing on the social justice and environmental issues of our current age. His present work is in understanding the relationships among our environmental crisis and the Rights of Nature, Corporate person-hood, and Recovery from the Globalization of Addiction. “We cannot recover, heal or change our direction within the structures that brought us to this crisis. We need to look outside the existing economic, social, and political structures to heal and set a different course.”